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University of Zambia Visits KIU on a Fact-finding Mission


KIU, Main Campus - On Monday, February 13, 2023, the Management of Kampala International University led by the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Mouhamad Mpezamihigo received visitors from the University of Zambia, who were on a fact-finding mission with regard to the sustained impact, visibility, and accomplishments of the University over the years.

The team include Prof. Anne Lungowe Sikwibele, the Acting Vice-Chancellor, of the University of Zambia, Mr Stein Mkandawire, the CEO of ZAMREN, Mr Ronald Hatoongo, the Board Secretary, ZAMREN, and Mr Nicholas Mbonimpa, the CEO of the Research and Education Network for Uganda (RENU).

They enquired about the eLearning capability of KIU, and how the university has leveraged digital technology to provide education access to students, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Education Access Through Digital Technology with Support From RENU

In his opening address, the KIU Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Mouhamad Mpezamihigo told the guests how the University has leveraged digital technology to help students to access learning resources off campus and conduct high-level activities virtually.

“KIU had 3 virtual graduations online in 2020 and 2021. We also had management meetings online, in addition to Senate and University Council Meetings.”

He also commented on the excellent services provided by RENU, “RENU has helped KIU to access learning resources for students off campus. Though we had experience with students having difficulty submitting their answer sheets online.”

In her remarks, the DVC Finance and Administration, Assoc. Prof. Janice Busingye noted how RENU helped the University to reduce internet costs.

“RENU helped the University to reduce the cost of internet access and gave us better services. Additionally, they have a professional support team. During the COVID-19 lockdown, RENU helped the university interfacing with our IT Managers, and provided flexible bandwidth, especially during peak usage”, she said.

At moment, RENU has connected the Main and Western campuses of KIU.

Infrastructural Capacity and Support for eLearning

With the support of the Dutch Government-funded Netherlands Organization for International Cooperation in Higher Education (NUFFIC), the University has set up an eLearning studio that provides support to produce multimedia resources. With the studio, staff members can develop video and interactive content that will support learning online.

“Interestingly, our online platform was used to build capacity for other institutions in Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan, and Ethiopia during the implementation of the NUFFIC-funded East Africa-based Digital Innovations and Skill Hub (DISH). Our Learning Management System (LMS) platform enabled these institutions to access content online, and equally benchmarked our system in the development of their Learning Management System”, Prof Mpezamihigo added.

Assoc. Prof Busingye, also explained how KIU has been resilient in the adoption of eLearning.

“We had assessments and exams online. We made sure all the policies and legal frameworks were in place before we conducted online exams. There were a lot of issues – lack of electricity, and internet access for students in the rural area. We had emergency solutions for students who were unable to submit. The students were trained before the exams, so, we were able to manage and reduce the number of students that might have issues with the LMS Platform.”

Implementation of Medical LMS in KIU

The Acting DVC Research, Innovation, Consultancy and Extensions, Prof. Durraiz Rahman, gave a brief overview of the plans by the University to use a blended learning approach for medical programs.

“We are planning to use blended learning for our medical programs. Through this approach, the student can access all the learning resources before lecture begins. The recorded lectures will be uploaded online for the students to watch later.”

KIU Success Mindset

The Vice-Chancellor gave an insight into how KIU has been able to remain relevant over the years.

“At KIU, we learn from our past and see how we can improve. For instance, we gave back to society through 50% tuition waivers on a PG Programme for August 2022, and January 2023 intakes. We improve our research and innovation output by encouraging more staff to publish through the reduction of their teaching hours.

“We do not believe in competition, but in collaboration. We have attracted a lot of international students and staff. Currently, we have expanded our PhD programmes to 30, which will increase our funding base for research.”

The visitors also toured the campus by visiting the KIU Centre for Innovation and Excellence, Innovation Lab, and the eLearning Multimedia Studio.